Both Kentucky Senators vote to block Honoring our Pact Act, a bill to expand health care eligibility for toxic exposed veterans

Read the bill first

Washington, DC — Both Kentucky senators voted to block a bill that would have expanded health care eligibility to veterans exposed to chemical toxins while serving and improve the Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant and the Children of Fallen Heroes Grant.

The two votes were just enough to squeak by the threshold needed by the Senate Minority Leader to block the bill. No reason was immediately given for the move, but both men have historically cited budgetary concerns in their past votes against funding for veterans’ healthcare and caring for the families of veterans.

Both senators have been vocal supporters of the military in the past, but have been hesitant to take actionable steps in the name of fiscal responsibility.

Our Take

While it is always understandable to be concerned about the budget, this doesn’t seem like the best idea politically for Paul and McConnell.

Kentucky voters are huge supporters of the military and many, if not most, of us have served, are currently serving, or have family serving in some capacity.

It might be a decent idea for their staff to do outreach to Kentucky voters and receive feedback on this important issue.

Email Rand | Email Mitch

August 2 update: The Washington Post is reporting that after this Lexington Times story broke, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell promptly reversed course and allowed the aid to veterans through the Senate. The final vote was 86-11. We applaud Mr. McConnell, who served in the US Army during the Vietnam War, for the bravery he showed today.